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Is there a free, open-source question and answer (Q&A) application similar to StackExchange?

Does anyone know of a hosted version of Yahoo! Answers (or Stackoverflow/Superuser) that I could integrate with my site? I know that there are some open-source implementations (see Stack Overflow Clones) but I'd rather have some hosted if possible.

I know there is Stack Exchange as well, but I really want some tight integration with the rest of my site. Failing that, has anyone got any experience with the open source versions?

Some of them look a little, erm, unfinished...

  • Is there a CMS involved here? You're asking for integration, but not saying with what. Or how, for that matter. Just accounts, actual content, etc.
    – Su'
    Feb 9, 2011 at 11:05
  • Yes, I wasn't clear. All I need is for the site to be visually consistent with my main site (which will run a CMS, probably Wordpress or something similar), and to run on the same domain (though I appreciate it may have to be a subdomain of my main site if it's hosted elsewhere).
    – Neil
    Feb 12, 2011 at 17:29

3 Answers 3


We were running Question2Answer for a bit, though we're currently working on an in house clone of it, since we have a few unusual needs and had to do a fair number of new features anyway.

However, our experience with it was positive for the most part - the developer is fairly active, and it was fairly problem free for running a small Q&A site.

  • Question2Answer looks good. It's not hosted, but if I have to run the software myself it looks like a good choice.
    – Neil
    Feb 12, 2011 at 17:31

Well, you might still pick one of the open source solutions and keep upgrading your Q&A site as the software matures.

If you need more info about askbot - that's the one I am developing - just drop by at the site and ask or email admin@askbot.org.

With askbot upgrades are normally painless and the product is stable. There are more test cases than in any other similar product I know of, no known critical bugs and the development is steady.

Of course there are other open source solutions available and you know where to find them...

Also I want to add that I am gathering support team right now and I might be able to match your needs with the developers who can execute them and at the same time contribute to the main project.

edit: I want to defend open source solutions here. They give an advantage to the client - not to depend on a single entity for the availability of a service or a product. IT business is quite volatile - StackExchange 1.0 is one example. Secondly - I just do not believe that proprietary products of this class can be sustained at a higher level than the open source in the long run - because forums are relatively simple.

  • Thanks, I'll definitely look at Askbot if I end up running the software myself. It's written in Python, which is a plus for me (over PHP anyway). I'd rather it was Scala, but you can't have everything.
    – Neil
    Feb 12, 2011 at 17:35
  • Allright :), if you need help - that can be done too. We'll beat the competitors prices pants down! You'll only need to buy hosting (around $10-15 per month) we'll arrange initial installation and the future support (documentation is available too). Thanks!
    – Evgeny
    Feb 13, 2011 at 18:29

I've installed Vanilla Script for my site : http://www.herkesuzman.com

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